I beleive the Bible to be the word of God as far as it is translated, copied, and interpreted correctly. In the course of my studies of the Bible, I've discovered that it has a long and convoluted history. So, these are my discoveries and my musings of Christian history and doctrines.

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Location: Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, United States

Monday, May 02, 2005

Introduction

Some people say that the only way to understand the truth is by reading and relying solely on the Holy Bible and on nothing else. One of the most well known individuals who did so was Martin Luther in the 1500’s as he sought to defend himself during an inquisition regarding the 94 thesis that he nailed to that fateful castle door. But despite his claims of scriptural authenticity, he nonetheless used some scriptures to prove his points and completely rejected and avoided others that contradicted his position (to be discussed in greater detail another day).

In the process of reading the Bible thoroughly, studying the history of Christianity and discussing it with others, it became painfully obvious to me that relying on the Holy Bible alone to ascertain the truth of any church or doctrine is not without it’s difficulties and stumbling blocks. More often than not, attempts to ascertain the truth only ends up in endless debate, with neither side converting to the other. Often any good feelings towards one another disipate entirely. But didn't Christ teach love? If defining the truth were as simple as quoting a scripture, then why are there so many Christian sects with so many differing doctrines?


For one, different people can and do interpret the same verses of scripture differently than others, and two, the scriptures are not 100% without error themselves. If people only knew just part of the Bible’s history, I am sure that the opinions of many would change with regards to various doctrines. The fact of the matter is so few people know even the basic history of the Bible, not to mention Christianity as a whole. Amazingly enough, I have run into many people who think that the Bible is just one single book, written by one single individual, during one single time in history. Or, they think the books of the Bible are in chronological order. And Christianity has evolved into so many different forms. Often sects have done complete reversals on dogmas previously enforced by violence centuries earlier.

Perhaps this ignorance is because of the tendency of the public school systems (at least in the United States) to avoid teaching anything that has anything to do with religion. The fact that much of western civilization’s history is so closely intertwined with religion means that very little real history gets taught. The fate of nations often relied on decisions and alliances made by popes, archbishops, cardinals, or monks as well as those made by kings, queens and princes who were often influenced by religious doctrines. Also, I am inclined to think that some pastors (but not all) preach only that which they think will fatten their wallet the most and don’t care to rock the boat in any way, shape or form.

Though the Bible certainly is important in one's quest for truth, I would hope that there are other means available to remove all doubt regarding any specific doctrine, otherwise we are lost in endless debate, "Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth." (2 Timothy 3:7)

1 Comments:

Blogger Mary A said...

Nice to see your blog up, Scott. I wanted to be your first "comment." By the way, I love your template choice! ;>)

4:58 PM  

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